After Your Surgery

Post-Operative Instructions

Please read this important post-operative information for adherence after the exposure of an impacted tooth.

If you are undergoing this procedure, it is important to follow these instructions exactly to ensure optimal healing and quick recovery.

After surgery, leave the surgical site alone. You may have a small gold chain that is attached to your braces. Leave the chain alone as your orthodontist will use this chain to help position the tooth.

A small amount of bleeding is common for up to 24 hours. If you experience excessive bleeding (your mouth fills up rapidly with blood), place a gauze pad directly over the extraction site and hold it in place with firm biting pressure for around 30 minutes or until the bleeding can be controlled. If your bleeding does not slow, please call our office.

Swelling is normal after surgery and is a major cause of post-extraction discomfort. Swelling can be reduced by applying an ice pack to the side of your face for 10 minutes; transfer it to the opposite side for another 10 minutes. Continue icing the face as tolerated for the first 1–2 days.

If you went to sleep for surgery, it is important to start drinking again right after surgery. Start with water, Powerade®, Gatorade®, or juices. Once you can tolerate fluids, you may start to eat soft foods like mashed potatoes, eggs, and oatmeal.

Begin brushing your teeth and cleaning your mouth the day after surgery. It is important to brush all of your teeth, even if the teeth and gums are sensitive. Bacterial plaque and food accumulation near the site will delay healing. Begin saltwater rinses the day after surgery and continue until the surgical site heals. Rinse with warm saltwater rinses 3–4 times daily. To make the saltwater solution, dissolve a ½ teaspoon of salt in a small glass of warm tap water.